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Melissa Harris- Perry

News/Business. Melissa Harris-Perry. Analysis and discussion surrounding political, cultural and community issues. New.

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Us 26, Brooklyn 8, Obama 7, Emily 7, America 6, Michelle 5, Aishia 4, Sasha 4, Turkey 4, Richelle 3, Mrs. Obama 3, Maryland 3, John Boehner 3, Dr. Joe Biden 2, Derrell 2, Lg 2, Samsung 2, Danielle 2, The Home Depot 2, Duracell 2,
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  MSNBC    Melissa Harris- Perry    News/Business. Melissa Harris-Perry. Analysis and  
   discussion surrounding political, cultural and community issues. New.  

    November 24, 2012
    7:00 - 8:59am PST  

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rewards we put right back into our business. this is the only thing we've ever wanted to do and ink helps us do it. make your mark with ink from chase. this morning, my question, why is it easier for a turkey to get a pardon than a person? plus, the other second term. how the first lady will use her next four years and the castle brooklyn built. one checkmate at a time. first, it is thanksgiving weekend. we are talking about the american family in all its many shades of gray. good morning. i'm melissa harris perry. thanks for joining us on this saturday after thanksgiving. the holidays, lots of food, lots of shopping and a whole lot of family. family, how we love to welcome
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them when we visit and how we love to wave exhaustedly as they depart. family is a small but powerful word that defines an increasingly diverse array of relationships and situations. as a culture, our definition of family has gone through an evolution, albeit a sometimes slow and painful one. so be careful about romanty sizing that 1950s leave it to beaver family. yes, there are families that consist of one man and one woman who are happily married to each other, who have never been married to anyone else and who are rearing only their biological children born bout any reproductive technology and born after the two the adults were legally married. yes, that's a great kind of family. there are many other fantastically loving, wonderful, creative, fulfilling and healthy ways to make family. even jesus was born to an unwed mom and raised by a doting stepfather. listen.
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these days our film and television culture is finally keeping up with the variety that is family. >> come give us a hug before we go. >> hug her. that's what she is there for. >> what does spectacular mean? >> it means super awesome. >> blueberry syrup? >> spectacular. >> he is half her age. >> don't say it. >> we are getting a baby today. >> oh, my gosh! >> what are you doing in there? >> go away. this is all we have anymore. ♪ ♪ our house family is more than about individual choices or cultural practices. tell us about policy. during slavery, men and women have deep bonds of love attachment and mutual commitment. those bonds were not protected by law. they did not have the right to legally marry in any american
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colony or slate. men and women were only parents as long as it served the purposes and timetable of the slave holder. the practice of coveture meant that free white women could marry but they couldn't initiate divorce or have sole custody of their children, couldn't own property or enter into legal contracts. slavery is over and coveture has ended so it is all equal at the altar of family now. not exactly. as a matter of policy, the altar is still a defining framework of family. our laws continue to make it clear we value one kind of family over all others, married couples. married couples enjoy economic benefits in areas of taxes, estate planning, employment, medicine, dealt, housing, not to mention social es schemteem. what if your family is a same-sex union. they only have marriage rights in nine states in washington, d.c. that leaves family in 41 states
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without access to the economic benefits of marriage. why this narrow focus on marriage at all. since 1970, marriage rates have dropped more than 15%. divorce rates have climbed. fewer people who can marry are choosing to do so. more people who do marry are choosing to exit. last year, the number of unmarried people in the united states was 44%, including single parents, people with partners, those who are widows and people happily choosing single life. being unmarried does not mean you are without family. law is often blind to these families. to those where kids being raised around the biological offspring of a married couple. what if your kids are really your neighbors or your nephews or your grandkids. narrow definitions of family can make everything from student loans to doctor visits that much harder. it can be adoption for loving lgbt families or single women tough if they are banned from
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marrying or if policy treetsz them as if their households are unstable. can we begin to talk about the quirky combinations of family that occur when a family goes across race, geography, language religion. how about those for whom it means a combination of relatives, friends, partners and work colleagues. life partner or next of kin is not just about a piece of paper. family is more varied and beautiful than it has ever been. now, we have to get our laws to recognize this. at the table, marcia garrison, professor at brooklyn law school and co-editor of marriage at the crossroads. law, policy and the brave new world of the 21st century family. msnbc anchor and newlywed, thomas roberts. lester spence, he and his wife have five kids and aishia moody-mills, director of the fire initiative of the center for american progress.
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her wife, danielle, was recently honored as part of the root 100 for her work on environmental justice. thank you all for being here. i greatly appreciate it. >> marcia, what do you mean when you say the american family is at a crossroads? >> many things. the american family is at a crossroads in many respects, one of which you identified. we have an increasing rainbow of families, no longer does the typical family look like ozzie and harriet 50s family that you described. what we also see today is an increasing class divide in family formation. >> yep. >> one that we can't celebrate, because it means that many of our families are increasingly stressed and unable to care for their children adequately. >> the key data on this has been the fragile families data that suggestion there are many different kind of family forms but part what we need to be
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concerned are the economic circumstances in which families find themselves. lester, you and i have been friends and colleagues for years and i tease you about the idea that you all have five kids. who has five kids? >> just me. >> just you guys. in part because of the economic consideration. i'm the youngest of five but it is from a different sort of set of economic circumstances that families were facing. >> yes. it is a significant stressor but it is not just -- to get you guys some sense, my oldest now is in college. so you think about the wide range of costs that we have to cover. i remember my parents paid for my college tuition through grants. now, it's a tremendous stress for us to take care of, for us to basically take care of all the bills we have to take care of and on top of that, pay college tuition. >> so you have got sort of the full range of parenting. you guys are a two-parent household. yet the other piece of this for me is that policy impacts us,
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right, aishia? this isn't you make a lot of money or you don't. either there is a stressor or there is not. policy can influence and impact the quality of life our families experience. >> absolutely. you said you have the luxury of having a two-parent household. for families that are headed by same-sex partners, is having two parents in the household doesn't always provide the economic benefits and support and stability that one would expect. in most states in our country, one of those parents may not be recognized as having a legal relationship to the children in that household. they may not be able to carry them on their insurance plans or pick them up from daycare or make medical decisions about them. our laws are so antiquated, they are not recognizing the two adults that are caring for that child legally. >> it can happen in same-sex partnerships or if it is the grandmother that is doing the caring or the neighbor.
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there are ways in which we haven't fully expanded our economic or legal policies to fit the realities of our family. thomas, with he were having a great time in preparation for you coming in terms of looking at your wedding photos and just sort of the enjoyment. >> it is good stuff. >> look at how beautiful you guys are. >> but the very fact that you all have the legal capacity to marry is because here in this one state there is the ability of the willingness to recognize your marriage as a family. >> it is great. we have to say who those people are or they will kill me. >> there is my family, the roberts family, my mom and dad are on the far right side. these are all our nieces and nephews and over under the banner of american family, that's our youngest, braxton. so the age ranges here. with he go up to 20, dillon, our nephew in the center and all the way down to braxton, who is about four, four ish. they are going to kill me if i don't get this right. so all of our siblings were
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there. this was a really big deal for us. our families were there. i had friends from first grade all the way up to our boss, phil, all in one time and space if you can imagine how great this is and gavin newsom, lieutenant governor of california flew in to marry us. it was epic, so special, the best night of our lives by far. i highly recommend it to everybody out there. go get married. whoever you want to marry. in certain states now, if you are part of the lesbian and gay community, you have that option to be able to do that. it was so fulfilling. i grew up pretending a lot to fit in, pretending to be straight. i find now and aishia, you could probably speak to this as well. when you find your voice, you do not want to shut up about it. i have found my choice. i feel very privileged to have found it. patrick and i were together 12 years up to the point where we got married. we deserved that opportunity. >> i feel like there is something as you point out.
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the 4-year-old on up. the fact that they have also. it is not just you two making this choice. it is that your whole families are participating in a way that contributes to an expanding definition of family for the 4-year-old and all the way up. given that we are looking at communities where people are going to have these expanded social understandings, how does that translate for us into policy? >> it translates several ways. there is no question but that weddings are joyous events. >> it is good stuff. >> it is good stuff for everyone. as you noted earlier, americans are increasingly not marrying. what we are seeing even more is a growing class divide. those who are college educated, marry and their divorce rates are actually no higher today than they were in the 1960s. these families are increasingly stable, increasingly able to offer this kind of joyous family opportunity and experience to their children.
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couples at the low end of the economic spectrum increasingly are foregoing marriage, not because they don't want to marry, not because they don't value it but because they feel they can't afford to. the leading problem that these couples site as to why they are not marrying, is because they just don't have the money. they want that wedding of the sort that you described. >> it ain't cheap. >> it ain't cheap. but these couples are still having children. that's why our nonmarital birth rate is so high. these couples at the low end of the socioeconomic spectrum have much higher rates of relationship dissolution. >> it is not exactly these questions. we saw the issue of single parenting emerge as a political issue in this year's campaign. stay right there. we are going to come back and talk more about family life. is it private or is it public? ♪
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during this election season, there were two kinds of families that came up for severe public scrutiny, same-sex couples wanting to marry and single moms raising children. we talk about family life as though it were an entirely private matter. 2012 reminded us just how public some of our families are. i don't think i will ever forget the moment in the debate when it sounded like mr. romney was suggested that gun violence is directly caused by single parents. >> oh, yeah. when he said that, it was really interesting. i thought about columbine where you had these kids who actually had parents who both of the parents were in the home.
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presumably, they were the typical and healthy, quote, unquote, american family. so, yeah, this idea that the only families that can produce healthy children are those that have a mother and a father is really problematic. we have defied that over time we have had single mothers raising wonderful children. a study came out recently showing children of lesbians or gay couples are just as healthy if not more resilient than children from other families. >> there is a pretty substantial proportion. of same-sex parents, a 2010 study, about a quarter of same-sex women couples are raising kids. about 11% of male couples are raising children. >> we can have whatever emotions we want to have about it. these are the new demographic realities that we face. >> lesbian couples of color are just as likely to raise children as women of color.
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this conversation we used to have about double income, no kids, and gay couples just don't parent is completely untrue. what is a sad piece of that is also defined as this stereotype of wealth within the gay community is that kids who are raised by same-sex parents are twice as likely to be living in poverty. that's something interesting we need to talk about. when we talk about economic benefits of marriage and our policies and our social safety nets are our failing families that are modern families, the new normal. we have to talk about lgbt families. parents who are in same-sex relationships. >> i want to bring you in on this creation. there is all this enthusiasm about marriage equality as it gross. i'm a huge marriage equality ad voe the ka. we are excited about your wedding. i am worried about the trouble with normal.
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if we suggest the way to make family is always through marriage, not only do we sort of limit the opportunity for lgbt couples not living in states where they can marry but also all of these other family forms that are occurring outside of marriage or with straight couples or single individuals. can we push for marriage equality and say other forms of family are equally valued and valuable. >> it is two great points. i think aishia brings up the fact of the new normal. kids growing up. the american dream is to grow up, get a good job and start your family. in the work place now, there is still discrimination in the work place. you can be fired in certain states for being lesbian and gay. you still can't start your own family. the american dream when you are growing up gay or transgender, bisexual. you don't have an example
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leading the way of people that we see nowadays of people that are out and talking about how their lives are being formed. there are two sim, very simple concepts, grow up, get a job, start your family. now, kids are growing up with that. a great point that you make, a great question you ask, how we can get outside of that. beyond marriage equality for how people want to construct their families. there is a lot of work that still needs to be done on that front. big questions. right now, i know, in certain states, delaware, hawaii, illinois, rhode island, minnesota. those are all states right now that are on the precipice of looking into marriage equality and trying to afford it. certainly, those states are bordering delaware, rhode island. they are bordering states where this already exists. illinois with iowa. it will be amazing to see how that moves forward. aishia, you could probably speak to this as well to see four ballot initiatives. >> pretty amazing. >> through a popular vote is
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really amazing. but to not get too excited about that type of win moving forward. it doesn't necessarily mean that other states are going to follow suit. >> 10 out of the 51 if we include district of columbia. if there was one economic policy that would support different sorts of families, what would be the one thing we would want to say. is it the expansion of marriage rights? is it a change in how we do health insurance? what would be the one thing? >> i don't think we can reduce it to one thing. certainly, we need equality in marriage rights. that's an important probably paramount issue for lbgt families. for other families that don't fit that profile, marriage equality isn't going to be the right policy initiative. certainly, for all families, we need more economic initiatives to help parents raise their children in the way we would all like.
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we need more tax benefits. we need higher child allowances. we need publicly funded daycare. we need an array. >> we need publicly funded daycare. that zero to five, the critical time. >> can i say something? >> you absolutely can as soon as we come back from the break. as soon as we come back. more on family. with verizon.
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hurry in this saturday and sunday for great deals. like the lucid by lg, free. or the galaxy nexus by samsung, free. this weekend, get the best deals on the best devices on the best network. exclusively at verizon. we're back. now on our panel is cynthia butler. aishia, give me your contribution on the question of policy. >> beyond just forming families through marriage, we should also think how we equalize our adoption laws across the board. we have children in our country who are being raised by people
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that are not their biological parent. i was raised by my grandparents. be it perhaps a parent that is a same-sex partner that doesn't have a legal tie. if we were to figure out how to equalize our adoption laws to make sure that second-parent adoption, stepparent adoption is available and that gay partners and unmarried partners can jointly adopt, that would cover the responsibilities of being able to safeguard and care for children, which is what the family policies are about. >> adopted family members, almost 70% are married couples. you look at unmarried couples are only at the 2% rate on adoptive parents. that includes heterosexual and same-sex couples. i also wanted to ask. there is this other name out there around family that to me in part is connected to this. we often here if you choose not to do abortion, you always have adoption.
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adoption is a loving option. which it is. it is an extraordinary option. it is not equally available to all racial categories. african-american children, spanish speaking children are much more likely to spend a lot of their life in foster care. there are so many narratives about this is what family is supposed to look like. one of the major means is, black women can't find a man or the church says you have to make family this particular way. from your position as a religious study scholar, how does that aspect of who we are influence? >> i think it influences tremendously. you have a lot of women that wait around and say, i'm going to wait on the lord to give me a husband. this is the only way you can have a child. that's just not true. if you decide to adopt, the first thing people look at you and say, oh, my gosh, couldn't you have just waited. i just had a graduate student in the program. she still has her ph.d. she got
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flack from even people within. >> she is a single reverend doctor. >> she decided to become a parent. she is great. she finished her program in five years. i have another friend who is a reverend and just had a baby. >> superhuman. >> kind of, yeah. these are the things about what family is about. religious institutions put a lot of pressure on people about this. when i was in the church, i got the same kind of pressure and i thought, i can't do this. i can't do it in the ways they think about it. my situation is not this perfect situation that i can walk down the aisle with some guy, because none of these guys are what i need. >> it doesn't mean i'm familyless. i lived in los angeles. i have extended family. i have a great family. when you are away from your family and you need people to help you, there has to be people who can step in and be your family that you can designate until your other family gets there. some of us, we are going to grow old. we are not going to have kids.
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who is going to be our family. how can we designate someone else to stand in that place for parents or siblings. definitions of family are just too narrow. they really are. i don't like them. >> even as she is talking about, if you don't have kids, who is going to help you in your old age? the notion of covering your kids under health insurance or your spouse under health insurance or having the availability. if these things were human rights that attached to the individual, one would not need to form a particular kind of family in order to make it happen. >> that's right. i have been trying to wrestle with this for a while, not just because i have a family, right? if you think about -- i have these arguments a lot with people in black communities. it's normative for us to have a husband, a wife and kids. we look askance at people who doesn't fit that. we are more likely to have that. we have to fight for a politics
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that takes into account kids and parents no matter how they are formed. if we don't do that, we will have kids with poor economic consequenc consequences and poor health outcomes. we will increasingly put stress on families, whether they are poor or middle class. we have this idea there are these middle class families that are working, middle, upper class families that are working and these poor families that are not whether the reality is, none of them are working. >> it is kind of broken. >> they are all broken. we don't even have the politics to publicize our private stresses. right? >> nobody talks about divorce rates in middle and upper class families, how this happens, why it happens. it is always the pressure of, it must be those poor people. historically, it has never been that way. if you think about the migration period. african-american families, you left somebody behind in the south. you brought them up north. you took care of somebody's
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kids. you did all this. this is a history not just for african-americans but immigrant groups. you send your kids forward to america and hope somebody can take care of them. the parents are back home. you send money back home. there are all sorts of ways. >> we are seeing this in the many latino families. thanksgiving makes us think about families. there is another thanksgiving topic on my mind. in my letter this week, it's too a turkey, not a u fem mitchell. i am writing a letter to a turkey. the politics of the president's pardon when we come back. [ man ] ring ring... progresso
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thanksgiving weekend, at sleep train. ♪ sleep train ♪ your ticket to a better night's sleep ♪ we are not going to have a supreme court that will overturn roe versus wade. we are not going to give a 20% tax cut to millionaires and billionaires. we are not eliminating the department of energy.
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we are not letting detroit go bankrupt. we are not vetoing the dream act. we had the choice to do that. we said no. when you give a child a toy, it has to work. ♪ make just one someone happy and when it's a toys for tots child, well, what could be more important? so this year, every hasbro toy donated to toys for tots will be powered by duracell. happy holidays. duracell with duralock. trusted everywhere. in advance of the thanksgiving holiday, president obama pardoned a turkey. >> you know, they say that life is all about second chances.
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this november, i could not agree more. so in the spirit of the season, i have one more gift to give. it goes to a pair of turkeys named cobbler and gobler. the american people have spoken. these birds are moving forward. >> the whole affair inspired my letter this week to one lucky bird. dear cobbler, it's me, melissa, congrats on being the first nonhuman to receive a letter from nerdland. more importantly, congratulations on spending the rest of your days roaming the historic estate of mt. vernon. it is a good deal. even though you didn't really need a pardon as peta pointed out to the president, it is no the as if you are guilty to anything. there are some that need second chances. your pardon and chief has been
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reluctant to use his pardoning power for humans. you may not know the details of american jurisprudence. presidents have the power to commute sentences and pardon crimes. pardon wipes out the conviction, commune tation sets aside the punishment. both offer a second chance, kind of like the one you got on wednesday. an executive undoubtedly should be judicious in his use of this power. recent numbers from the department of justice show that president obama is unusually reluctant. he has pardoned only 22 individuals, while denying 1,019. that is improving just 2% of all requests processed by the d.o.j. president reagan found 1 in 3. george h.w. bush, 1 in 16, bill clinton, 1 in 8 and george w. bush, 1 in 33. a mere 3%. with president obama, it is 1 in 47. compare that to more than half of the turkeys whose pardons he has granted. according to legend, president
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abraham lincoln pardoned a turkey when his son, tad, begged for mercy on behalf of the turkey that was to be the family's holiday meal. he was consistent. his biographer writes that he regularly used the pardon rather than con sign army deserters and their family to harsh punishment. he believed that government should avoid planting and cultivating too many thorns in the boos soss some of society. president obama has not followed this example. the result may be that he is allowing resolvable injustices to persist. take the example of katy baraboo. she was only 22 when she helped her boyfriend mail he can stas citi to the u.s. she confessed and was convicted. she has had no further troubles. she can't vote and can't travel
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out of the country for work and is barred from adopting a child. cobbler, you got your pardon. katy's request was denined. luckily, they have requested a fresh review aaron's case for a minor reel in a drug conspiracy. maybe you can check up on your msp shows that you have missed. maybe you can scratch out a letter to the white house allowing the president to show as much mercy to humans in his second term as he has shown to poultry in his first. sincerely, melissa.
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what in the world are those people thinking? it is like the moment where the movie stops with the loud scratch of the needle. family and politics, pass theant acids. he might your liberal uncle who has a subscription to "the nation" and is planning to put a copy of cornell west and tavis smiley in everyone's christmas stocking. despite the many differences with the president. the left carried president obama to re-election. many now see it as time to take him to task. a recent article published on the liberal site alternet.org says, we have dodged the bullet of a mitt romney white house. so let's get back to reality. despite his campaign trail populism, the president will continue the politics of accommodation to conservatives. >> we will witness how all the cousins in the democratic party electoral family cope with the
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big daddy in the white house. you can't just stamp your foot and get your way. with the president, most legislation still originates in the house, which is still in republican hands. presidents need public support and pressure to move their agendas effectively through congress and congress has to believe they will be punished politically if they don't follow president obama's lead, which means he needs robust support. in a second term, this is the left's best opportunity to shift the discourse and create meaningful alternatives to the conservative agenda. this is family and politics at its best. what are folks going to beholding the president accountable from the left in this second term? >> there is an opportunity to create more pushback on the foreclosure issue. i think there is an opportunity. the one thing the president has that he hasn't used effectively is the bully pulpit.
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a tremendous opportunity for him to peel back that politics of resper respectability argument and carve out a new set of politics that allows for leftists to fight. i am talking about foreclosure issue and student debt on domestic stuff and creating increasing possibilities to deal with poverty and the like. >> the poverty issue has been one on which the president has had particular pullback. clearly, not only do we need better unemployment rates but living wages. is that a possibility from this preside president? >> before we get to the wages, we need to see what happens with the fiscal cliff showdown. this is going to be a strong opportunity for him to go to bat for poor people. he is going to say, we are going to make sure we are caring for poor people. this isn't just a anybonebulous
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conversation for a family that includes donald trump. i think how this conversation turns out and how he fights for really the people in the very bottom is going to be telling about how he works on poverty moving forward. >> are we going to see that amazing coalition that came together in november begin to fracture or will it stay together in order to press the president towards the left? >> like aishia says, if you can get the upper echelon of america to pay their fair share, that would be a good start. a little bit more, you might have trouble with that. the fair share, you might have a good swinging shot at. in the first time, a lot of people might have thought the president had an attitude of not working across the aisle and he who cares the least has the most power. and shooing people away. >> it is the used car definition of bargaining. >> if you can walk away from the table, you will get the better deal. >> now, as the president is thinking and rightfully so about legacy, because the first term is about getting through to get
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reelected, now, it is an eight-year proposition. we have to figure out what our legacy is going to be. with john boehner showing up with the john boehner interview, obama carys t obama carries the law of the land. if the coalition, the pressure of the people that voted, the election, the results mean anything to the right, they know that they are in trouble, because they are losing voters. they are losing their messaging. they need this four years, especially the first two, if they want to keep the house. if they want to look like obstructionists for a solid eight years, that is no way to take back the white house in 2016. >> i do think they are going to be obstructionists. what i would like to see from progressives is the same kind of organizing that conservatives did that put all these crazy
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people in the house. this is a problem. we got our guy in. >> then, we are going to yell at him. >> so we can't yell. we can't say, black-faced republican. we can not say these kind of things. that doesn't make anybody change. what does make change is for people to be consistent. i will use one example from the african-american community. souls to the polls. let's get souls to the white house. higher unemployment, foreclosures, all these things. this is the time for people, these coalitions to come forth. this is the issue. not to be mean or anything. every other coalition has got something out of the president except the african-american community. >> the environmentalists. >> i think you can argue with that a built. there was a fair sentencing act that reduced that disparity. things like stimulus and the
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payroll tax deduction had a disproportionate impact. undoubtedly, there has been an irritation. what i want to touch on is how do you shift that incentive structure? you don't just say, you need to do better, mr. president. what does the incentive structure shift. part could be about the legacy concern. souls to the polls works because you can vote people in and out of office. >> what i am thinking about is another way around this, another way to get at this. if you look at the most successful, the stuff that was mind-blowing to me wasn't the president's election but all this stuff that happened at the state level. you are talking about california peeling back three strikes and getting a super majority. in a number of other states that happens. what can we do at the state level to begin to organize people both in cities and institutions to create the moral
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imperative the president has to respond to. >> which is the model of the civil rights movement. even if you go to the model of montgomery and birmingham, you end up with local policy fights that end up leading to that '65 voters rights. not because king went and made a speech to johnson and said, you need to do better but because. >> he rose from underneath. >> that's it. >> clearly, this family has a lot of thanksgiving politics. we are going to stay on exactly that topic as soon as we come back. introducing zzzquil sleep-aid. it's not for colds, it's not for pain, it's just for sleep. because sleep is a beautiful thing. ♪ zzzquil, the non-habit forming sleep-aid from the makers of nyquil.
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we're back talking about the politics of holding the president accountable from the left. all right, lester. >> i had to get warmed up. that's my first time in the joint. i talked about that state issue. we've got people already
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organizing at local issues, doing real organizing, not mobilizing, come vote for my boy, doing real grassroots organizing. what we have to do is create more space for that organizing. in a state like maryland, maryland wanted to create a jail, a $104 million jail for youth charged as adults. it was a coalition of black youth and the white left that occupied baltimore that stopped that or at least kept it from taking place. it's that type of organizing is the type of things we have to create. then, that creates a moral incentive for the president and other legislatures to do it. >> not the moral incentive but political pressure too. if we are talking about organizing from the ground. we have to remember, the president still has to deal with the house. the house is stealth led by john boehner and the republicans. >> who will keep saying he is not compromising even when he
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is. it is like the upside down world. on the one hand, you have the left saying, you are caving, you are caving. on the right, you have him saying, he is a brick wall who won't cooperate. that makes that capacity really tough. >> this idea of negotiating and compromising is nothing is working because it is really the president pumping heads with the house. i think until we can get that ground swell like you are talking about happening in maryland to put pressure on the sitting members of the house, that's the only thing that's going to help the president be able to get things done. we have to work from the ground to put pressure on the other elected officials. >> what i love about that it says, the job here isn't yelling at the president but yelling at those house members. the accountability is in part about saying, mr. bain ner, last week you said a.c.a. was the law of the land. this week, you are putting it on the table during the physical cliff. we need help during this country. the supreme court has said it is legal. there is an account ability question for the president
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particularly on things that presidents do, like drones. on the domestic policy side, it can't be just presidential. >> if we look at the success that the lgbt movement had and the immigration had, it wasn't president obama sitting in his oval office deciding he was going to wave a wand and do things that substantially supported those communities. it was the communities organizing on the ground trying to move policy and working from the ground up that then created an environment and a climate where the president could move the ball down the road. i think for other issues, whether we are talking about climate change and economic justice. otherwise, it has to come from the ground up. >> what needs to be done still, there is a long way to go. president obama did have this coalition, a majority of minorities, that came together to put him back in office. everybody on this second term does expect to see some type of movement for them. >> exactly.
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>> as you point out, there needs to be something for everybody. president obama likes to make the phrase that he is the president of all. so all need to feel that way. all need to feel that they have his eyes and attention on what is of krn to them. >> yes. i think the most important thing now, the biggest thing is 2014. it is time to get some of these folks out. obstruction is going to continue. if we are going to have a chance to do something from 2014 to 2016, people have to mobilize to begin to push these representatives out. those 95 guys that wrote the letter about susan rice and everything else, it is time to get these clowns out of office, period, end of story. >> you are thinking that the shoes would not show back up in washington, d.c. the cement shoes are still there. >> thank you so much, aishia, for joining us today. the rest are coming back. there is another obama also having a second term. first lady,my will show obama. we are going to talk about what her second termite look like
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and ink helps us do it. make your mark with ink from chase. on inauguration day, president barack obama will officially begin his second term in office. it will also be the start for the person right by his side and well ahead of him in approval numbers throughout his term. first lady, michelle obama. after watching her every move, whether it was planting the white house garden or teaching us how to dougy. we have all become well-versed in the michelle obama of first ladyhood. it didn't follow the hillary clinton model putting her ivy league degrees behind promoting policy or the traditional model of first ladies who, let's face it, have tended not to move around so much. michelle obama has carved out a
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unique way of being first lady, simply being herself. remember her official white house photo. what you might most recall about it are, two things unlike any portrait of any first lady before and after. her left and right arms. welcome to the gun show. you will see something more remarkable. right there in the room with her looking out over her well-toned left shoulder is president obama thomas jefferson. by picking this back drop, the first lady also brought into the room another part of white house history where women like her were treated like property instead of people. there she stands on the other end of that timeline, a living rebuke to that history, her body, her personhood, possessed by no one but herself. more than any of the other women that have held the title before her, michelle obama has chosen to make herself the actual embodiment of her agenda as
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first lady. as the most visible propone entd for her let's move campaign to tackle childhood obesity. she doesn't just talk the talk but walks the walk or more accurately, she runs. we've seen her racing barefoot on the white house lawn and we have been chained into stepping up our gym game after watching her drop and give us 20 as if she could easily do 20 more. we have discovered she is not the one to play around with in a hula hoop contest. we have watched her jumping like it was just yesterday she was little michelle robinson on the south side of chicago. as we have become acquainted with her way of being the first lady, we couldn't help but notice her way of being wife to the president. judging by the fact that this photo was the most retweeted message in twitter history, we have noticed a lot. with me at the table, athea butler, thomas roberts, lester
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spence, and joining us is katy mccormic mccormick-lelyvelt, former press secretary to first lady, michelle obama. i want to begin with you. obviously, you saw first lady obama up close and personal during the first term. how much of the michelle obama we see is an intentional portrayal and how much is her authentic self coming across. >> i actually think it is 1 unhad% of her authentic self. when i started working for her in the spring of 2007, what we wanted to do is put her in these venues where she could really be herself and relate to people on a level of shared experiences. she is that genuine purpose when you see her giving hugs or playing around with kids, she is mom and chief. that is no joke. she is a warm, approachable, accessible person off camera and on. >> as you bring up the point about mom and chief.
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i know there was some sort of critique that emerged from the second wave feminine movement that said, okay, you can't say mom and chief. we have come too far. i kept saying, no, no, no. when an african-american woman says, my family is more important than anything else it is almost politically subversive in its historic cal power. >> to give the feminists some credit, they were trying to move forward. where african-american women, things being said about we are not good enough mothers or we are not paying attention, i think it was really important for first lady obama to say this first of all. it is important to see her with the girls, to see two young african-american women raised in the white house outside of the public eye on one hand but on the other hand having this mother hovering around them. >> and the grandmother. >> that's the blended family to tie it to the first part. i think the second piece of this is just to see her move. to not be this figure that is
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static. with all of the negative immanlying that came from conservatives, some of the conservatives on the right on the web with the awful pictures and things ta they do. i think it is amazing she continues to go forward in the midst of all that and does what she does without reservation and without hesitation. >> i have such mixed feelings about that, the hug picture that was the final image. the one thing was, i've been reelected and the most important thing i do is to hug my wife. there is also that backbone of the community thing that sometimes happens. the fact that we don't see her face. am i way, way overreading that? >> i think you are. >> for me, i'm now an outsider. it showed the power of their strength and partnership. when we first started in 2009, when we first got to the white house, mrs. obama made it clear to us. she wanted to make sure whatever we were going to work on was going to have a strategic and impactful, tangible impact in
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people's lives. she didn't want to do a thing until she knew her girls were good. we spent the first several months getting out meeting the different government departments whether they were career or staff or new to the teams, to say, we are here, we are the new game in town. we look forward to all working together. we were doing our homework. it was not until those girls said, we are good, soccer is good, friends are good, school is good. then we started. let's move took off a couple months after that. >> she is a political animal for sure. she knows how the mom and chief thing is going to work. obviously, her first concern is for the girls but she has become the president's best weapon in terms of re-election being out on the campaign. she is a force. she is so likeable. certainly, to men and women alike but she will show up with this $17 j. crew sweater that you find in the back of the store. you are psyched you find a deal on the sweater. >> she is a real person. >> if you ask what did she accomplish in her first term?
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the answer is, sh he was part of the team that got the president reelected. we are talking before about first term and second term. she is the wife of barack obama but she is part of the team of president obama. in her role as that team member, she effectively helped to get him reelected. >> we would tease in 2007 in iowa. we called her the closer. there was so much about her story. whether you are an african-american, a working woman, a daughter, a wife, that there is an opportunity for shared experience and relationship building and trust building. that's what helped seal the deal. >> it is fascinating that it did given that there was a point in the campaign sort of early on where the discourse was that michelle obama was somehow going to be a liability to her husband. by the end of the first term, she is the closer. >> what i remember is charles ogletree, harvard law professor. he taught both of them. what he said was michelle was
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the star. at no point did i not believe she was the power. >> it is the matter of translating that. >> there is danger particularly in black communities where the notice of this overwhelming black woman. when you say that, i think, she is navigating both being powerful and somehow not appearing to be emasculating. >> yes. she has to navigate that. she has to navigate that particularly in this position. this way she becomes a hillary clinton 2.0. she is really, really powerful. there are constraints around what the first lady can do. they narrow that. with that said, i don't think she would have to navigate that hurdle. i think her presence made it such that the only people who ask if barack obama was really
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black were stanley crouch and debra dickens. nobody else asked that question, because she was there and because they saw how bad she was. >> by which you mean? >> good. >> first time on the show. that's my language. >> we chewed over the first lady's first term a bit. when we come back, we will talk about the first lady's second term and how it came to be that american fell in love with the first lady. [ snoring ] ♪ [ snoring ] [ male announcer ] introducing zzzquil sleep-aid. [ snoring ] [ snoring ] [ male announcer ] it's not for colds, it's not for pain, it's just for sleep. [ snoring ] [ male announcer ] because sleep is a beautiful thing. [ birds chirping ] introducing zzzquil, the non-habit forming sleep-aid from the makers of nyquil. ♪ progresso.
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almost every weekend. derrell hasn't been able to visit his mom back east in a long time. [ shirley ] things are sometimes a little tight around the house. i wasn't able to go to the wedding. [ emily jo ] since derrell couldn't get home, we decided to bring home to him and then just gave him a little bit of help finding his way. ♪ [ laughs ] [ applause ] i love you. i love you, too.
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a funny thing happened to michelle obama on the way to the white house. after months of being mischaracterized as angry, radical and unpatriotic, america fell in love with her and her
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approval skyrocketed to 68%. after a peak at 72%, her approval numbers dropped to 66% in 2010 where it has held almost steady for the last two years. she had a 65% favor abilitabili she spoke at the democratic national convention in september. you just can't buy that kind of political capital. in the next four years, how does michelle obama plan to spend that capital. we talked a bit about this sort of, let's move. will we see a more policy oriented nature to that program? more than just sort of kids and family should be healthy but we should address food and environmental injustice, food availability, nutritional supplements. >> she might be more affected without doing it in a policy way but the way she has been doing. i wish she would push forward the idea of everybody having a
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garden. that's one of the great things. that can help in the food desert areas and big, major cities where people don't get enough fresh food. to get kids out working and a garden is the is greatest thing. how might she be able to speak in a different kind of way about things either historically or what we see as the nation in the future. i think she has a different way and a different place to say that to sort of set the stage for where we are going in the future and what happens after those four years are over with. i wonder if she could be a little more forward looking to say, this is what i hope for our kids, this is what i hope it looks like for military families in the future. this is what i hope vis-a-vis certain policy issues but not trying to make that policy on her own. >> i would say, following up on that, our families are becoming clearer in a way.
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they are a whole different set of arrangements we couldn't have possibly imagined back in the day, 40 years ago, much less 20 years ago. i think she can do an excellent job with transitioning us. she has a strong role to play. her oldest is going to be college age. i am thinking about this student debt issue. i have five tuitions i'm responsible for. student debt is becoming -- most of the kids that i'm teaching, their parents are going into significant debt to put them through school. there is a way for her to rhetorically to create a space, a richer conversation. >> he has always been very up front about the fact that he and michelle had just paid off their student loans not that long ago. you make a great point. you brought this up too. about the environments that mrs. obama was placed in where she could be our authentic self and
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truly shine and people could fall in love with her. we are dealing with the girls and going to college. we are filling out this paperwork. being able to talk about that from first person just like she has done with "let's move." the other thing i think is amazing, is she and dr. joe biden have been very out front on vets issues. >> particularly hiring vets. >> hiring vets and the other thing we have heard from this administration so vocally is about community college kids and the fact that they have been up front about praising community colleges and two-year degrees and drawing attention to people who have been kind of shoed aside as if a two-year degree, that's just a two-year degree. it has been exhausted through the president, the vice president, dr. joe biden and mrs. obama. >> we would always say about mrs. obama, she is sort of where policy and people intersect. she is not sitting at the policy table. she is getting out into the community and insuring what the president and his team are working on are in line with what
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people really need. when you look at let's move it has that multifaceted effort to it. there are salad bars in schools and kids yanking carrots out of the ground. there are doctors and parents getting more involved. the goal is to reduce it in a generation. we have another 25 years to this fight. >> given that the last democratic first lady is now the secretary of state for the united states, i think there is undoubtedly a little bit of an impulse to ask whether or not michelle obama, who will still be a very young woman, a woman in her early 50s when the terms are over, whether or not she is going to seek public office and public life? i have never seen anything in what she says or self-represents that she wants to be an office holder. i imagine an eleanor roosevelt sort of role for her when she becomes the moral conscience for the party and becomes a rainmaker for legislative candidates. >> she gets that question a lot.
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will you run for president when your husband is out of office? she says, absolutely not, no thank you. there are a lot of different ways you can effect change. public public allies in chicago. she started that. lifting back and lifting up the people. once you have reached a goal, lifting the people behind you. there is a lot you can do outside elected office to create change. >> certainly, with the most diverse elected congress coming into session, while she might not be able to inject policy, she can certainly throw her weight behind certain elected leaders that are doing such. >> with 66% approval rating, there is political capital to be used there. lester, thank you so much for joining us today. i greatly appreciate it. when we come back, we are talking about this youth question. you are going to give up your seat to a young person. we have -- remember, when they entered the white house, they were little girls. now, they are going to leave at teens. we want to talk about the impact of sasha and malia obama next.
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when the president first vowed to bring change, few of us would imagine how applicable that would be for the two young ladies that would join them in the white house. they have been one of the most visible remindsers of the four years that have passed. we have watched them grow from chubby-cheek little girls to poised stat uesque young ladies who are giving their mother a run for the money. by the time the president leaves office, malia obama will be old enough to cast a vote for his successor. joining our panel as a member of that generation and one of our nerdland people, 18-year-old
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emily carpenter, a youth organizer for girls for gender equity. nice to see you agn, emily. >> nice to see you too. >> it was realizing that malia obama will be of voting age when her father leaves office made us want to talk to someone who is part of this malia generation. what generation, if at all, if any, has it made for you to have the obama daughters in the whit. i feel like when i was -- i believe i was 14 when his first term started. i was really excited. i was still really young and didn't know what that was going to mean for me to have this family, the o bama family in th white house. seeing someone who kind of looks like me has been even more influential, not for me little people in positions of power, in positions that mean something that aren't just in the
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entertainment industries. tofor the people younger than me to see sasha and malia and michelle and president obama is really important. >> on the one hand, we get amazing symbol. my daughter was just a little, little girl when they were elected. so she will really grow up with them. of being urban youth, being african-american youth and how tough it still is for kids beyond the symbols. do young people in your high school talk about the of loans and college and jobs? >> they do. they do talk about those things and i feel like they do talk about the things about like col. that's the biggest topic right now. how are we going to pay? who is going to pay? i don't want to have to be overwhelmed with loans just for undergrad. everyone in my class is stressed about ta right now. >> is there a space?
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is if this is where politics and people meet, emily is a person dealing withz politics and policy, is there any space for the first lady to have a particular role in this sort of discourse? >> i would imagine she and her team are hard at work figuring out how they can most strategically help the president's next four years. i don't know the answers to those questions. this is certainly a major issue for them. getting back to the girls for just a second, i think one thing that's been particularly important is the role that their grandmother has played. having privacy for those girls so that they can grow up, be teenagers, be real people, not get caught up in all of this, i think centered and grounded has been a real achievement over the last four years. everyone respecting their privacy is a very big deal so she can remain little people. >> is that something new or is that typically been how press has dealt with first daughters and first sons in the white
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house to provide some opportunities for sheltering and privacy? >> because of the way we have developed as a media and the way social media has developed, they would like to keep sasha and malia in a protective bubble and allow them to develop. they didn't choose to go into elected life. i think chelsea clinton growing up was the first example where we had another child in the white house. the bush twins, they needed their privacy to grow up and flourish and go to college and do crazy, wild thungs and sasha and malia, hopefully, they will get to have their crazy, wild college times. i was talking about the oldest daughter getting to go to college in the next couple of years. hopefully, and emily is going to have some wild times too. but i like emily said you were young when president obama took office. i was young too. i was 36. while we have an example of this family in office, i'll never get
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over that we've had an example of a leader who relates to more people on more levels and not just by the fact that he is a good family man. >> as much as the girls are off limits in a certain way, they are also -- he draws them in when he talks about policy. he will say things like, i'm supporting this policy because it is good for the girls or when i look at my girls, i think this. there is a way that the girls are part of a narrative about policy. >> it makes him empathetic about issues. you can't not help but think about your daughters and what it means for your daughters to help access the same kind of help, granted, they are in the white house. most daughters are not. they are not in the same place. it does make it important. the other thing i was going to tie in to something you said about the grandmother being there. it makes for this very interesting thing about a blended family but also seeing the younger girls with their
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grandmother. i think this is a really important symbol for people. there are a lot of grandparents raising kids right now, because either the parents are busy or they have care for them. that also is another way for this. i think especially for sasha and malia growing up in this environment. we are seeing them be normal. that is the biggest thing of all. i think. you probably don't remember this. people really picked on amy carter. they picked on her looks. they picked on chelsea as well. i think the way that they have protected their two daughters has been amazing and great and you will be able to see them blossom and grow because of it. >> our goal is policymaking that extends that protection to all the emilys and sashas and malias of the world. thank you, thomas rob lerts. i really appreciate you. >> thank you too for coming and giving us some of that inside insight on the first lady. >> anthea and emily are going to
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be back. right after the break, how kings and queens are changing the lives of students in brooklyn. [ female announcer ] stop searching and start repairing. eucerin professional repair moisturizes while actually repairing very dry skin. the end of trial and error has arrived. try a free sample at eucerinus.com. or treat gas with these after you get it. now that's like sunblock before or sun burn cream later. oh, somebody out there's saying, now i get it! take beano before and there'll be no gas. than giving her a diamond is surprising her with one. save the surprise. shop online and ship to any zales store free.
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so jill can keep living the good life. crest. life opens up when you do. if you live outside of the new york area, you may not have heard of brooklyn's is-3138. a junior high school in the neighborhood of williams berg. 70% of is-318 students live below the poverty line. 70%. yet, the school has won more national chess championships than any other junior high in the country. more than 30 and counting. a new documentary, brooklyn castle, follows five students on their journey o statewide and national championship amidst drastic budget cuts to after-school programs, including chess. one of those students is richelle valentine, on her way to becoming the first african-american woman chess master. >> i have the goal of becoming a
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master, the first african-american female master when i was in eighth grade. i thought, i can really do this. it is realistic. i know i can do it but it's harder now. i believe in my dream less now. >> yet, her dream is becoming more of a reality now. richelle joins me now with her assistant principle and chess coach, john calvin. welcome to both of you. >> you could beat me in three moves so we are not going to play. listen, richelle, you have won four national championships. you are at this moment kind of waiting on college acceptance letters. where, what is chess to you in your life? what is chess? >> chess is my life. that's what chess is. when i was in third grade, chess taught me to be humble. my grandmother, she would always beat me. when i beat other people, it taught me to not brag about it and accept the fact that i am
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not the best chess player but i'm on my way to being there. now, as a high school senior, chess has taught me to strategize and it's taught me comprehension and it's taught me -- chess resolves around my life. so my success stems from chess, whether academic or after school. >> so accomplishment, humility, strategy, all of those things. that sounds like what a school should be doing and yet i was pulling moo i hair out last night watching the documentary. you kept having to manage with budget cuts and budget cuts and taking all of this that does this away. >> since 2008, our program has really struggled with budget cuts. we have had to fight hard to keep the best chess program in america going. there is a lot of news about the fiscal cliff, the fiscal cliff, as though it is coming in january. for most public schools, it hits every single year. it has been a real struggle to fund our program.
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that's a basic bargain we make with our students. students that are the best at chess shouldn't have to worry about whether they are going to have the opportunity to play against the best in the country. >> even hearing you make that sentence, we have to struggle to keep the best chess program in the country alive. i think, why should that be that you would need to struggle? you have shown the accomplishment. you have shown that you can do this often with students whom i think people would imagine couldn't do this. >> if i could show this to one person, i would be like mitt romney. i know the election is over. when he made comments about the 47% as though people who struggle in america, struggle economically, that somehow they are entitled to certain things. i would love for him to see this movie to see the parents in our film who often are working class folks who work harder than any people that i know. the teachers in our building who really work so hard to empower the kids in our school. i think that people who have ideas about entitlement need to
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see this film and understand the struggles that people go through are real. public schools can be successful in this great country. >> richelle, one of the great things that struck me about the film was the team nature of chess, on the one hand, it is you, you in that competition and you all as a team. what aspect of the team part of chess has been important for you. >> chess. my chess team in 318 is sort of like my second family, probably because we did chess so much. we chess as a class, chess after school. we have played in tournaments every saturday. i saw them more often than i saw my own family. so that's how like we became closer that way. >> when you play, you are almost always playing against boys, right? this is not track and field. they don't put the girls in one category. does that make any difference for you as a young woman to be sitting there playing? >> i guess it boosts up my ego a
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bit, because i like beating boys. >> you find it a particular accomplishment to beat the boys. >> especially the docky ones that think they are ought matt click better than me because i'm a girl. i guess it sort of gives me a confidence boost. in general, they are all people. so beating them just proves that i'm a good chess player. >> there is a little bit of the language of proving that i hear from both of you, about proving what you could do and the team can do and what the school can do. there is so much evidence of what you can do. as you are passing this along and other young people are coming in, what does it mean to have proven this? what's the big end game beyond being the world chess champion? >> i guess it is kind of i'm happy that i get to inspire young girls that are trying to join, be a part of chess and who are like, who don't think they could do it because it is such a male-dominated field. that's why i'm happy i'm doing
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this. also, the fact that what chess can give you as a young woman. so as i'm trying to get into college, what chess has given me throughout the years. >> very good. we are going to get back on this topic as soon as we come back. we are going to bring a couple more voices back to the table. we are going to bring athea back to the table. she is a professor at the university that you hope most to get an acceptance letter from. don't go anywhere. if you think running a restaurant is hard, try running four. fortunately we've got ink. it gives us 5x the rewards on our internet, phone charges and cable, plus at office supply stores. rewards we put right back into our business. this is the only thing we've ever wanted to do and ink helps us do it. make your mark with ink from chase.
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strongeou increase attendance in class and better benefits associated with quality after-school programs. students that participaten after-school programs are 50% less likely to initiate drug use than their peers. we are back with two of the stars of brooklyn castle, junior high school brooklyn is-318 assistant principle, john gal vin and chess time. emily gender equity. this question of young people like richelle and others needing to go rae the money to do the work they are doing, on the one hand, it shows us how hard-wking and dedicated they are and from my perspective, it shows how much we are failing these students.
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if you are a student of this quality, you ought to be ablehey to the chess championships. how much do he with have to change the policy to make that possible? >> we have to realize we can't continue to gut education policies. kids like michelle need to be able to go wherever she needs to in order to do this and realize we want to invest in our kids. what is happening is we are undercutting people who are really very smart and they are not going to be able to do the kind of education they need later if we don't invest in them at this level when they areol, cutting programs like after school, cutting programs and opportunities we have for field trips, it is ridiculous. we must stop the cuts. we absolutely have to. >> if it is taking courses for the test, emily, the kind of after-school work you do is political organizing. part of what i saw was, you were saying, write the letters to your political leaders. when you think about sort of who you are and what you have
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accomplished, how important was girls for gender equy important as part of that? >> so important. it gave me a place where i knew i would be safe and where i could take what i learned in school and apply it to my real lei life. a place where i was meeting kids from all overbrook lynn and the burroughs. >> emily is one of our favorite ta teenage nerds. if you are socially awkward or not the most popular girl in school, that's fine. what we want to celebrate and love are the accomplishments. you said, i might be a nerd in one way but not in others. >> what do you do with that title of nerd or geek? >> i don't like titles. i consider myself smart and my grades show that. i play chess and chess is deemed as a geeky sport.
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i'm completely okay with that. because, as long as i have my friends who support me and all my decisions, chesswise and my family, who are proud of me for what i've done, that's all i could ask for. >> i love the sense that in a certain way, an accomplishment in a field that's nontraditional in certain ways, nontraditional around gender and race, pro he vids a litt provides a little swagger about what you could accomplish. >> when you walk through the school building, all the tro hefys are not hidden away. we celebrate the success of our smart kids in the school. we think that being smart is cool. we have banners and the chess hall of fame. we try to celebrate the intellectual achievements. a lot of schools celebrate football and basketball. in the end, we think that chess offers something that kids can latch hold of. it really deserves these amazing accomplishments from these kids from brooklyn needs to be celebrated. >> both of you young ladies are waiting over the course of this
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next week or so for early acceptance letters from ivy league universities. would you have thought of applying to an ivy league university in fifth grade or fourth grade when you first started thinking about it. was this part of chess for you. >> when i was in elementary school, i wanted to be a lawyer. ever since then, my mom has been putting me in legal programs. ivy leagues, they were there but i didn't think i would get in. part of what chess did is help me boost my confidence. my mom would always tell me, michelle, you are good enough. with me, it would always be, i'm okay but i'm not deserving of that opportunity. but like chess has taught me that like i'm good enough. i deserve to play with the big boys and i can beat the big boys and i can go to college with the big boys and applying to ivy leagues wa was a decision i made because i was like, hey, why not? i'm good enough to get in. i deserve a chance to be at one of the best schools in the
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country. why not? >> how about you, emily? >> well, i felt when i was in elementary school, i wanted to be in an actress. i was going to act. that's what i was going to do. but i feel like my after school programs really did like rielit, that i could compete, that i could go to a competitive school. so working with girls through gender equity, doing self-defense, also something that's male dominated has helped me see i can apply for a top school and can go for what i want. i think that definitely, the after-school programs have helped me the most with that. >> what does it say about us that i am this inspired by young women under 20? >> there is something kind of both fabulous and also appalling about how much they have accomplished. >> it is not appalling. i started thinking, what is the word. looking at both of you. both of you have got a lot of confidence because you were doing these events in school. it was part of, whether it was after school playing chess or
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you organizing and all that. so many kids don't have this way in which they can jump into something and feel like they own it. that piece of ownership that you know you did something that's really great and putting up the trophies and everything, growing up in high school is really hard. this is a moment where people pick at you for all sorts of things. if you can have this one thing you are really good at, it's amazing. when i was going through, it is very difficult to be the smart kid. nobody wants to talk to you or you get shunned or all these other kind of things just as though you shun people that might not be as smart as the other end of the spectrum. i do think what is happening now is a way in which we must invest in our educational system so that kids can have afrom a grea everybody is going to get that kind of enforcement at home to sit down and do the homework and everything else. it does something for parents too. it makes them see that you can be involved in your child's educational process as well. to not let this just go away
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simply because there is not enough money and everything else. there are ways to get around these things and fight for our kids education so our nation won't go down the tubes. >> emily and richelle, let us know as soon as you have heard from your universities. we will it up on your website. we want to follow your trajectory and everything you are doing. thank you for being the kind of coach and educator that helps sort of -- i see not only their brilliance but the kind of emotional maturity that is part of this. for being an advocate not only for your students but more broadly. it matters a lot to who we are going to be as a nation. embrace your inner nerds. you are always welcome here in nerdland. our foot soldiers of the week are helping us to understand the true meaning of family. yeah, sure you can. great. where's your gift? uh... whew. [ male announcer ] break from the holiday stress.
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>> the fans had a goo lot more paid for. >> a hug. thanks so much, drew brees was one of the most inspirational leaders in helping the city of new orleans rebuild after hurricane katrina. now he wants to help people in the northeast. drew brees and his wife brittany told cbs they formed the drew brees foundation committing $1 million to help with super storm sandy relief efforts. that matches the $1 million pledge the nfl and players made to the red cross just after
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sandy. congressman jesse jackson jr. is resigning after dealing with bipolar disorder and other health problems for nearly a year. he said wednesday he needs to spend time getting better. he's been away from d.c. for most of the year. jackson is also being investigated for possibly trying to get president obama's old senate seat in exchange for fundraising. he has denied doing anything wrong. we know you spend the first part of your saturday and sunday right here on hln but what's are you up to? we want to see what weekends in america look like in your hometown. kimberly captured this sweet moment in colorado springs, colorado. look at the mama and her fawn. she says she's thankful for photo ops like this. deer had been walking through her front yard on a daily basis. do you have a photo you'd like to share? go to hln.com/weekend express. your picture could be featured here. a massive fireball lifts a strip club right off the ground.
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